Initiating Global Service Learning Movement: Best Practices from Petra Christian University

  • Rolly Intan Petra Christian University


Petra Christian University (PCU) is a private Christian university established in September 22nd, 1961. Tracing back its history when there was a significant necessity in providing higher education opportunity and service in Surabaya, especially for Christian and Chinese-Indonesian people; PCU was initiated to fulfill the needs. As a population of academic community, up to present the majority of PCU student body are Chinese-Indonesian descendants with middle level-economic family background.

Through its vision “To be a Caring and Global University with Commitment to the Christian Values”, PCU enhances its concern and commitment in applying the “whole person education” or “holistic education” to equip the students with at least five excellences (academic excellence, emotional excellence, moral excellence, spiritual excellence and cultural excellence). Hence, the mind, heart, spirit and cultural engagement are blended nicely within their learning process in the university to prepare their roles successfully in the global era as global citizens. PCU, then, learns that Service-Learning (S-L) program is one of the most effective and powerful concepts as well as learning method in order to achieve the holistic education objective. In the program, students as participants gain some experience not only to mingle amongst the rural communities, but also to purposely support the society’s life by sharing their expertise, involving their emotion in building relationships and communication, and earning personal reflection and commitment to continue the caring spirit toward others.